The creative Habit By Twyla Tharp


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The creative Habit By Twyla Tharp

The book, The Creative habit, by Twyla Tharp, examines the concept of creativity in individuals. As the author explains, creativity is not inherent to specific people. It is something that can be achieved through constant practice and effort. The entire book provides the various steps towards attaining creativity, and the author explains how each step is crucial for the development of creativity in artists.

This paper presents a summary and outline of chapter 7, 8, and 9 of the book The Creative habit by Twyla Tharp.

Chapter 7: Accidents Will Happen

This chapter examines accidents as one of the most common occurrences when it comes to creativity. As this chapter explains, accidents are common to the process of creativity, and for that reason, individuals should accept the accidents they make without lament. As the chapter explains individuals should embrace accidents while at the same time avoiding over planning, as it does not help reduce the accidents that happen during the process of creativity. Other points that have been brought out in this chapter include:

Accidents are unpredictable and can be caused by a number of factors in the process of creativity.

Accidents that are caused by other people are the most common types of accidents, as people tend to be unreliable and should, therefore not be heavily depended on (Tharp and Reiter 120).

Accidents can also be caused by perfectionism, as people tend to over plan and over analyze their actions to the point that all invention and creativity is deterred.

Creativity, especially that of poets and writers, can also experience accidents that are caused by wrong structuring of the pieces of work.

Accidents related to wrong structuring can come as a result of an individual’s inability to play and invent using familiar forms (Tharp and Reiter 124).

Reducing your sense of obligation can also reduce the possibility of experiencing accidents in creativity.

Finding and using the right materials is part of the creative process and is therefore important in reducing accidents related to this (Tharp and Reiter 125).

Knowing the possible causes of accidents in creativity is necessary to ensure that accidents do not happen every so often during the creative process.

Chapter 8: Spine

This chapter builds on the concepts of the previous chapters in the book regarding the process of creativity. More specifically, the chapter examines the importance of having a spine or backbone when it comes to creativity. The spine is described as the unique nature of each person that inherent to the process of creativity. Some of the points brought out in this chapter include:

The spine is the centre of creativity and without it; individuals cannot claim to have produced creative pieces of work (Tharp and Reiter 140).

The spine gives each piece of work the artistic feel it requires to be termed as a creative piece of work.

Though creative pieces of work may look similar to each other, the spine is unique to each artist.

Before engaging in the process of creativity, individuals need to discover their spine.

Individuals can discover their spine through the aid of close friends and family.

Discovering one’s spine may also be carried out through the recall of one’s original intentions during the creative process (Tharp and Reiter 144).

After discovering one’s spine, individuals need to align their creative pieces of work with their spine.

Inability to discover and utilize one’s spine is one of the causes of creative failure.

Chapter 9: Skill

This chapter examines the importance of skill and ability in the process of creativity. As the chapter explains, creativity demands plenty of skill, as it is the only way through which individuals can reach their highest creative capacities with minimal interruptions. In addition to examining the importance of skill in the creative process, this chapter also examines other key points including:

Skill does not necessarily refer to one’s creative ability.

Being skillful does not inherently imply having creative abilities (Tharp and Reiter 164).

Personality is also a skill that people can use in their creative ventures.

Creativity cannot exist without skill, and crafting, which is also referred to as skill, always comes before creativity.

Skill requires hard work and determination for it to be successfully transformed into a creative piece.

Being aware of the particular skills that an individual has is the first step towards understanding one’s creative ability and what sets them apart from the rest (Tharp and Reiter 164).

Individuals can discover their skills on their own but another individual can also impose skill on an artist (Tharp and Reiter 165).

Having more than one skill may help in building one’s creative abilities.

Work Cited

Hartshon, Erin. Book Review: The Creative Habit By Twyla Tharp (with Mark Reiter)., 2006. Web. 31 October 2011. <<>>

Tharp, Twyla and Reiter, Mark. The creative Habit: Learn it and Use it for Life: A Practical

Guide. New York: Simon and Schuster, 2003. Print.

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